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virginia > Title 24.2 Elections > Candidates For Office

§ 24.2-500 Qualification of candidates

Overview of Statute

This section contains the qualifications to run for office and to hold office. Qualifications include residence in the Commonwealth for at least one year preceding the election along with qualification to vote for that office.

Statute

In order to qualify as a candidate for any office of the Commonwealth, or of its governmental units, a person must be qualified to vote for and hold that office. In order to hold any office of the Commonwealth or its governmental units, elective by the people, the candidate must have been a resident of the Commonwealth for one year next preceding his election and be qualified to vote for that office.

Code 1950, § 24-132; 1970, c. 462, § 24.1-167; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 226; 1973, c. 30; 1975, c. 515; 1976, c. 616; 1977, c. 490; 1978, c. 778; 1980, c. 639; 1982, c. 650; 1984, c. 480; 1987, Sp. Sess., c. 1; 1988, c. 469; 1990, cc. 476, 865; 1991, c. 137; 1993, c. 641 .

Definition [Person]

Any individual or corporation, partnership, business, labor organization, membership organization, association, cooperative, or other like entity.

For the purpose of applying the filing and reporting requirements of this chapter, the term “person” shall not include an organization holding tax-exempt status under § 501(c) (3), 501(c) (4), or 501(c) (6) of the United States Internal Revenue Code which, in providing information to voters, does not advocate or endorse the election or defeat of a particular candidate, group of candidates, or the candidates of a particular political party.

Definition [Election]

A general, primary, or special election.

Definition [Resident]

For all purposes of qualification to register and vote, means and requires both domicile and a place of abode. To establish domicile, a person must live in a particular locality with the intention to remain. A place of abode is the physical place where a person dwells.

Definition [Candidate]

A person who seeks or campaigns for an office of the Commonwealth or one of its governmental units in a general, primary, or special election and who is qualified to have his name placed on the ballot for the office. “Candidate” shall include a person who seeks the nomination of a political party or who, by reason of receiving the nomination of a political party for election to an office, is referred to as its nominee. For the purposes of Chapters 8 (§ 24.2-800 et seq.), 9.3 (§ 24.2-945 et seq.), and 9.5 (§ 24.2-955 et seq.), “candidate” shall include any write-in candidate. However, no write-in candidate who has received less than 15 percent of the votes cast for the office shall be eligible to initiate an election contest pursuant to Article 2 (§ 24.2-803 et seq.) of Chapter 8. For the purposes of Chapters 9.3 (§ 24.2-945 et seq.) and 9.5 (§ 24.2-955 et seq.), “candidate” shall include any person who raises or spends funds in order to seek or campaign for an office of the Commonwealth, excluding federal offices, or one of its governmental units in a party nomination process or general, primary, or special election; and such person shall be considered a candidate until a final report is filed pursuant to Article 3 (§ 24.2-947 et seq.) of Chapter 9.3.

Cases

virginia Cases

Out-of-State Cases

Federal Cases

Case Name: El-Amin v. State Bd. of Elections

Citation: 717 F. Supp. 1138

Federal District Court: Eastern District of Virginia

Year: 1989

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/f27a68e57290f71d49c643b3472877b4

Case Summary: Holding that election regulations that prevent some people from running for office and limit voter’s choices restrict the fundamental right to vote.

State Constitutional Provisions

Regulations & Guidance

Additional Resources

Candidate Bulletins (November 2016)